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Thread: How Do You Cut Your Fabric?

  1. #1
    Senior Member Dingle's Avatar
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    When cutting your fabric for a new project, do you cut it right side up or wrong side up? Does it really matter? Right now I'm ironing some fabric I got a couple months ago and I just noticed how uneven it was cut off the bolt! How hard can it be to cut fabric with that groove they have in the table which keeps the sissors going straight? Now I need to find out if I have enough to do my next top. Very frustrating.

    Kris

  2. #2
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    did you wash your fabric first? it goes bak to its "natural" shape after being washed and dried. very frequently the ends won't line up "nicely" after a fabric has been washed.

    sometimes the fabric is pulled crooked when it's wound on the bolt.

    i've learned to check for grain lines before buying fabric. if it's printed off-grain, one has to live with it.

    when they cut the fabric, they are (supposed to be) cutting it perpendicularly from the edge of the fabric, as it's on the bolt.

    i usually cut my fabric from the wrong side because I like to see the grain lines, but it really doesn't matter.

    i also prefer to cut my long strips parallel with the selvage instead of from selvage to selvage. that way i usually get at least two sides that have a true grain.


  3. #3
    Power Poster Ninnie's Avatar
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    do you mean when they scissor cut it, they cut it crocked? If so, you will need to even it up before cutting out blocks. I always cut from the front, don't know why, just do.

  4. #4
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    the cut looks "right" at the time the clerk does it, but the fabric reverts to what it really wants to do after it's washed and dried. it sometimes gets pulled off-grain while being processed.

    i usually buy a bit extra - if available and not overly expensive - to allow for shrinkage and errors - and mind changing

  5. #5
    Power Poster Ninnie's Avatar
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    Is the pattern stamped on?

  6. #6
    Super Member Shemjo's Avatar
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    I do cut from the "good side". I also tend to buy extra, but then I usually buy fabric because I like it, and don't have a particular project in mind. :?

  7. #7
    Senior Member Dingle's Avatar
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    Yes, I did wash and dry the fabric. Maybe thats why it looks like that now. I also ironed it with Magic Sizing. Now it looks like it's distorted. What did I do wrong? Last time I made a top I washed and just ironed, no sizing and it turned out fine.

    Thanks for the help

  8. #8
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    When I "soaked" my fabric with sizing, it was harder to handle.

    It also stretched while I was ironing it.

    When I just sort of "misted" it, it felt nice and crisp.



  9. #9
    Moderator littlehud's Avatar
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    I usually cut my fabric right side out. And I always have to square it up. Sometimes it pulls out of shape on the bolt and sometimes it is because we washed it.

  10. #10
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    most of the time i cut my fabric right side up. if the pattern is so busy that i can't see the lines of the ruler well then i cut wrong side up so i can see the lines better.

  11. #11
    Power Poster amma's Avatar
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    You have to be careful when ironing, too aggressive and you can easily distort the fabric, especially if it is damp :wink: after washing and drying, I hang fabric over a shower curtain and spray with starch diluted with water, get the fabric pretty damp and it usually dries nicely with minimal pressing.

  12. #12
    Senior Member Dingle's Avatar
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    If I washed and dried my fabric again to get rid of the Magic Sizing would the fabric kinda go back to the way is was so I can start over?

  13. #13
    Senior Member quiltswithdogs's Avatar
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    I usually cut with right side up but if pattern is too busy or dark to see the ruler lines, I turn it over to the lighter side.

  14. #14
    Super Member mpspeedy's Avatar
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    It is amazing how hard it is to get really good quality fabric. More than 40 years ago my home ecnomics teacher warned us that fabric was often distorted in the process of it being rolled on the bolt at the factory. I have always been one who tears my fabric to make sure it is truly straight. I worked for more than a year for a business that did custom dressmaking and alterations. In the garmet industry true grain is very important. I learned the hard way that it also makes a big difference in quilt making. When I have to piece I make sure the fabric is always on the grain or the results will not be pretty.

  15. #15
    NY Nancy's Avatar
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    Speaking of being wrapped crookedly on the bolt... I'm very puzzled about this issue. I find that the fabric is usually quite straight on one side of the fold, and is only crooked on the other half. Is anybody else finding this to be the case?

  16. #16
    Senior Member motomom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mpspeedy
    It is amazing how hard it is to get really good quality fabric. More than 40 years ago my home ecnomics teacher warned us that fabric was often distorted in the process of it being rolled on the bolt at the factory. I have always been one who tears my fabric to make sure it is truly straight. I worked for more than a year for a business that did custom dressmaking and alterations. In the garmet industry true grain is very important. I learned the hard way that it also makes a big difference in quilt making. When I have to piece I make sure the fabric is always on the grain or the results will not be pretty.
    My aunt, who taught me everything, used to make custom draperies and she always said the same thing.

    So, when you are cutting quilting blocks, do you use the grain or the print to line up the edges? This has been a point of frustration for me when the print does not line up with the grain.

  17. #17
    Super Member butterflywing's Avatar
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    this was the subject of an extensive thread, which i cannot find now.

    the upshot was that some us felt like the weaving threads were straight and tearing at the shop gave truer lines to follow. these members felt that shops ought to rip fabric instead of cutting.

    others of us felt that cutting was better because fabrics today are not woven as evenly as they once were and after washing they will return to the shape in which they were woven.

    it was generally agreed that ripping lengthwise was preferable for long strips as the lengthwise threads were reliable for borders and sashings.

    if anyone can find the thread, that might help. but the results were really very mixed. i wish i could remember the name of the thread.

  18. #18
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    I feel the same way about crooked cutting of fabric by sales people ! I cannot for the life of me see why when they have a groove to cut in , it's crooked ! I buy a lot of remnants for applique and so many of them are so crookedly cut , it looks like a 2 year old cut them .

    I just bought a panel of 4 looney tunes pillow panels [ remnant bin ] all of them are cut into the main panels ! GRRR! I wanted to make totes with these for Christmas presents , but now I need to find some way to add more to it . Anyone who buys these knows there is a line to cut them apart . Not these . These came from Walmart and they are all getting rid of all fabric ! May have to stop sewing / quilting .

    Annie

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